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MODIS Characterization Support Team (MCST)

The MODIS Characterization Support Team (MCST) is dedicated to the production of a high quality MODIS calibration product. MCST developed the L1B algorithm and all parameters necessary to run the code, and develops the quality assurance and verification of L1B product enhancements. The MCST flight operations team supports MODIS operations on orbit through command and control of the instrument. Responsibilities include developing MODIS operations scenarios, creating the operations database, monitoring instrument health and safety, and operating the MODIS on-orbit.

Instrument Operations Team

The purpose of the MODIS Instrument Operations Team (IOT) is to plan, schedule, and monitor MODIS activities. The MODIS Instrument Operations Team schedules a daily set of Operational Activities using the Instrument Support Toolkit (IST) software package provided by the EOS Flight Operations Segment.


MCST is dedicated to the production of a high quality MODIS calibration product. This product is a precursor to every geophysical science product. MCST works for the Science Team Leader and is responsible for developing and maintaining the calibration product (L1B algorithm).

L1B Product

Current L1B LUTs: Terra: Version Aqua: Version

Latest News

10 years since Hurricane Katrina was seen by Terra MODIS


Terra MODIS continues to operate successfully for 15+ years providing valuable scientific measurements of the Earth's land, oceans and atmosphere. More information regarding the on-orbit performance of Terra MODIS can be found here:
Xiong, X., B. N. Wenny, A. Wu, A. Angal, X. Geng, H. Chen, J. Dodd, D. Link, S. Madhavan, N. Chen, et al., "Status of Terra MODIS operation, calibration, and performance ", Proc. SPIE 9218, Earth Observing Systems XIX, 92180O, 2014.

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MODIS Science Team Meeting, May 2015 presentations available


The presentations from the MODIS Science Team Meeting, May-2015 are available at the following location:

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Aqua MODIS CFPA Workshop, April 22 2015


MCST arranged a workshop (via telecon) to discuss the status, impact on science products and way forward in regards to the Aqua CFPA temperature issue. The presentation can be found in the following location:

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Terra Band 36 Detector 7 (Product Order) QA change


Terra experienced an anomaly for B36/D7 beginning on 2015092.1740. After 2 weeks continually being in the anomaly state, the decision was made to change the QA flag for this detector from 'Noisy' to 'Inoperable'. All Band 36 detectors are currently flagged as Noisy.

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Registration for the MODIS & VIIRS Science Team Meeting now open


The MODIS and VIIRS Science Team Meeting will be held May 18-May 22, 2015 at the Sheraton Silver Spring Hotel in Silver Spring, MD. Information regarding registration, logistics, and agendas is now available here:

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Some Information about MODIS

MODIS (or Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) is a key instrument aboard the Terra (EOS AM) and Aqua (EOS PM) satellites. Terra's orbit around the Earth is timed so that it passes from north to south across the equator in the morning, while Aqua passes south to north over the equator in the afternoon. Terra MODIS and Aqua MODIS are viewing the entire Earth's surface every 1 to 2 days, acquiring data in 36 spectral bands, or groups of wavelengths (see MODIS Technical Specifications).

These data will improve our understanding of global dynamics and processes occurring on the land, in the oceans, and in the lower atmosphere. MODIS is playing a vital role in the development of validated, global, interactive Earth system models able to predict global change accurately enough to assist policy makers in making sound decisions concerning the protection of our environment.

MODIS was launched on the EOS Aqua spacecraft on Saturday, May 4, 2002 at 09:55 GMT. MODIS Aqua "First Light" was achieved when the MODIS Nadir Aperture Door opened on June 24, 2002 at 23:22:48 GMT. The Aqua MODIS instrument began taking data using side-B electronics. For a complete look at the EOS-PM/ Aqua mission, see

MODIS was launched on the EOS Terra spacecraft on Saturday, December 18, 1999 at 18:57 GMT. MODIS Terra "First Light" was achieved when the MODIS Nadir Aperture Door opened on February 24, 2000. The Terra MODIS instrument began taking data using side-A electronics. For a complete look at the EOS-AM/ Terra mission, see To read more about MODIS visit